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Minister: Downing of Iranian Passenger Plane Displays US Terrorist Nature

Iranian Road Minister Mohammad Eslami said that the United States' deliberate shooting down of an Iranian passenger plane in 1988 proved the terrorist nature of the Washington regime.

“Certainly, this incident shows that the US administration is really expansionist and terrorist,” Eslami said on Tuesday, addressing a ceremony to commemorate the passengers on board the Iranian Airbus 655 who were killed by the American USS Vincennes missile cruiser in 1988.

He warned that the Americans are after plundering other nations’ wealth, and said, “The US has no place in Iran. The US is attempting to stop the Islamic Republic of Iran’s progress by cruel and illegal sanctions and continue its plundering by returning to our territories but this will never happen and our country will pave the path of progress by its people’s vigilance.”

The Iranian passenger jet Airbus 655 that was flying from Bandar Abbas, Iran to Dubai, the United Arab Emirates, on July 3 1988, with 290 passengers onboard was shot down by the American USS Vincennes missile cruiser. All the passengers lost their lives with the remaining of their bodies floating on the Persian Gulf waters.

The incident was followed by Tehran’s filing a suit at international bodies, including the United Nations. Despite the existing evidence for the attack being intentional, the world forums ignored the facts. The UN Security Council held a meeting, after 2 days, and the speech made by Iran’s Foreign Minister let the world know about the untrue nature of the US remarks.

Although Iran filed against the US in the United Nations and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), both bodies adopted a politicized attitude and declined to follow up the case legally, they only bothered to sympathize with the bereaved families of the victims.

In a bid to limit the negative impact of its violent action, the US claimed the Iranian passenger plane was a fighter jet and intended to target the American missile cruiser. The then US President, Ronald Reagan, praised the act of the USS Vincennes, but said in a different interview that the American missile cruiser mistakenly shot the Iranian passenger plane.

Iranians mark July the 3rd each year by showering the site of the disaster with flowers.

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